2016.1 - Census of Population and Housing: Selected Characteristics for Urban Centres and Localities, New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory, 1996  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/01/1998   
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General descriptions of terms and concepts used in these documents are provided below. Tables are also footnoted where applicable for additional clarity. Detailed definitions of classifications and concepts are available in the 1996 Census Dictionary (Cat. no. 2901.0).

    Dependent child
      A dependent child is an individual who is either a child under 15 or a dependent student, who is any child under 15 years of age, or aged 15-24 years who is a full-time student, in a family. To be regarded as a child the individual can have no partner or child of his/her own usually resident in the same household.
      A dwelling is a building or structure in which people live. This can be a building, such as a house; part of a building, such as a flat; or it can be a caravan or tent, humpy or park bench. Houses under construction, derelict houses, vacant tents, or converted garages are not counted in the census.

      There are private and non-private dwellings. Private dwellings can be either occupied or unoccupied.

      A private dwelling is normally a house, flat, part of a house, or even a room; but can also be a house attached to, or rooms above, shops or offices; an occupied caravan or unit in a caravan park or craft in a marina; an occupied dwelling in a Manufactured Home Estate; an occupied self-care unit in Accommodation for the Retired or Aged; a houseboat; or tent if it is standing on its own block of land.

      An occupied caravan situated on a residential allotment is also classed as a private dwelling.

      Non-private dwellings are those dwellings not included above, which provide a communal or transitory type of accommodation. These dwellings include hotels, motels, guest houses, prisons, religious and charitable institutions, defence establishments, hospitals and other communal dwellings. Only occupied non-private dwellings are included in the census.

      Employed people are those aged 15 years or more who, during the week prior to census night, worked for payment or profit; who had a job from which they were on leave or otherwise temporarily absent; were on strike or stood down temporarily; or worked as unpaid helpers in a family business.
    Family household
      A family household is defined by the ABS as two or more persons, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering, and who are usually resident in the same dwelling.

      The basis of a family is formed by identifying the presence of either a couple relationship, lone parent-child relationship or other blood relationship. Some households therefore, contain more than one family. Due to processing limitations a maximum of three families can be coded to a household.

    Full-time/part-time employment
      This variable is based on the number of hours worked in all jobs held by employed people during the week before census night. It excludes any time off but includes any overtime or extra time worked:

      Part-time workers: employed people who worked up to and including 34 hours; and

      Full-time workers: employed people who worked 35 hours or more.

      A household is a group of people, who usually reside in the same private dwelling.
      People aged 15 years or more are asked to state their usual gross weekly income, which is the income before tax, superannuation, health insurance, or other deductions are made. Gross income includes family allowance, family allowance supplement, pensions, unemployment benefits, student allowances, maintenance (child support), superannuation, wages, salary, overtime, dividends, rents received, interest, business or farm income (less operation expenses) and worker's compensation.

      Household income is the sum of the personal incomes of each usual resident present in the dwelling.

      A person is defined to be of Indigenous origin if he or she identifies himself or herself as of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander origin.
    Industry (of employment)
      This variable describes the industries in which employed people (aged 15 years and over) work, and is coded to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 1993 (Cat. no. 1292.0).
    Labour force
      The labour force comprises employed and unemployed people.
      See definition under Urban Centre/Locality.
    Lone person household
      A person who usually lives alone in a private dwelling.
    Occupation (of main job)
      This variable describes the main job held by employed people (aged 15 years and over) during the week prior to census night, and is coded using the ASCO - Australian Standard Classification of Occupations, Second Edition (Cat. no. 1220.0).
      Overseas-born people are those who state that they were born in a country other than Australia, including those born at sea.
    Section of State (SOS)
      The SOS category classification uses population counts from the Census to define CDs as either urban or rural. Unlike the UC/L Structure, the SOS Structure relates to all CDs and therefore, in aggregate, the SOS Structure covers all of Australia.

      Within States/Territories (S/Ts), each SOS represents an aggregation of non-contiguous geographical areas of a particular urban/rural type. The five categories are:

    • Major Urban: urban areas (Urban Centres in the UC/L Structure) with populations of 100,000 or more;
    • Other Urban: urban areas (Urban Centres in the UC/L Structure) with populations of 1,000 to 99,999;
    • Bounded Locality: rural areas (Localities in the UC/L Structure) with populations of 200 to 999;
    • Rural Balance: the remainder of the S/T; and
    • Migratory: areas composed of off-shore, shipping and migratory CDs.
      A student is an individual who attends a secondary or tertiary institution on a full/part-time basis.
      Unemployed people are those who, during the week prior to census night, did not have a job but were actively looking for work (either full-time or part-time) and were available to start work.
    Unemployment rate
      The unemployment rate is the number of unemployed persons expressed as a percentage of the labour force.
    Urban Centre/Locality (UC/L)
      This geographical structure is defined by the 1996 Census edition of the Australian Standard Geographical Classification. Population counts (place of enumeration) from the latest census are used to define the UC/L Structure, which means this classification structure is only current at the time of the Census.

      The UC/L classification groups census CDs to form defined areas according to population size criteria. In broad terms an Urban Centre is a population cluster of 1,000 or more people, while a Locality is a population cluster of between 200 and 999 people. The delimitation criteria for UC/Ls are based on those developed in 1965 by Dr G. J. R. Linge.

      For statistical purposes, people living in Urban Centres are classified as urban, while those in Localities are classified as rural. As the UC/L Structure relates to CDs within defined areas only, the Structure, in aggregate, does not cover all of Australia.

      When Urban Centres cross S/T boundaries, the separate portions are uniquely identified and reported in their relevant S/Ts.

      More information about definitions, a full description of the method of delimitation of UC/Ls as well as a listing of UC/L Codes and Labels may be found in Statistical Geography: Volume 3 - Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Urban Centres/Localities, 1996 (Cat. no. 2909.0).